By no means was it perfect, but with seven games against the Braves and Cardinals, the Phillies can return to Citizen’s Bank Park with some momentum after a 5-2 road trip.
The Phils, who seek to continue to work their way into the race for the NL East have two of their most important series’ of the season ahead as they host the Marlins for four games starting Monday before hosting Atlanta again for three.
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Ryan Howard has turned, once again, into an RBI machine, ranking in the top five in the National League with 50.
And the bullpen has been fantastic all road trip long, with the two blemishes during the road trip going to Saturday’s starter Cole Hamels (who pitched well enough to win) and Kyle Kendrick Sunday, who relinquished a three-run lead.
The Phillies have been excellent on the road but have not proven they can turn Philadelphia into a home-field advantage.
The seven-game homestand gives the Phillies a chance to turn their fans and ballpark into an advantage, while perhaps picking up some ground on two of the three teams ahead of them in the standings.
The Phillies plan to honor Jimmy Rollins (perhaps while he is still a Phillie) prior to Monday’s opener.A ceremony will begin at 6:50 and fans will receive a Rollins All-Time Hits Leader print.The Phillies will start Roberto Hernandez against Miami’s Nathan Eovaldi.
Phillies drop finale on St. Louis
Early in Sunday afternoon’s matinee against the Cardinals, the Phillies looked to be in the drivers seat with a three-run lead.
But Kyle Kendrick had a lackluster bottom of the fourth, relenting to give St. Louis four runs in a 5-3 loss.
Cody Asche smashed a bases-clearing double in the second inning to give Philly a 3-0 lead.
But Kendrick surrendered four hits and a walk to the Cards who salvaged a 2-2 series tie in the four-game set.
The Phillies drop to five games behind the Nationals in the race for the division.